Let's face it... Flyers fans are in for an awkward season.
There is no way around describing what this 2014-15 Philadelphia Flyers team is. You can say they're a team in transition.
The word transition is not something that owners like to use or that fans like to hear. But it truly is the perfect way to explain this Flyers team.
It is not shocking at all either that the Flyers would end up this way. Ron Hextall was promoted to general just this spring, so he himself is still trying to make the team his own. He was left tied up with a few mistakes made by previous GM Paul Holmgren, and has been unable to reverse moves that were made prior to his promotion.
The Flyers selected a defenseman with their first pick for a second straight year.
The Flyers picked 18-year-old Calgary Hitmen defensman Travis Sanheim with the 17th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft on Friday. Sanheim will join a group of prospects that could be the future of the Flyers blue line.
Sanheim is 6-foot-3, 189 pounds, and completed his first season with Calgary of the Western Hockey League. In 67 regular season games, Sanheim recorded five goals and 24 assists for 29 points along with 14 penalty minutes and a plus-25 rating.
In a move many saw coming for months, even after a public dismissal last week, Flyers assistant General Manager Ron Hextall has been promoted to General Manager, and Paul Holmgren has been promoted to President. This was announced in a news conference on Wednesday morning.
Holmgren had issued a denial of any organizational movement after the series loss to the New York Rangers, but in those five days since, that organizational movement indeed occurred.
Hextall, 50, takes over this position after serving this past season as Assistant GM. He had previously served as Assistant GM for the Los Angeles Kings, playing second fiddle to former Flyers scout Dean Lombardi.
The Islanders disappointing season continues and after a difficult week with the trade deadline it’s now time to see where the future holds for the team. With one more season on Long Island before moving to Brooklyn, serious evaluations of this organization will be in place at the conclusion of the season.
The Flyers have announced that former star goalie Ron Hextall has been hired to be the Assistant General Manager and Director of Hockey Operations.
“We are very pleased to welcome back Ron Hextall to our management team,” said general manager Paul Holmgren. “Ron has a wealth of experience in the front office in various capacities which will be a valuable addition to our staff.”
Hextall's contract is a multi-year deal, Holmgren said, though he wouldn't specify how long just yet.
(Ron Hextall raises the Cup in 2012. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America)
Let’s face it: the Stanley Cup Finals will be a nightmare to watch for Flyers fans.
One scenario will see the hated neighboring-state rival New Jersey Devils raise their fourth Cup in 18 years, pouring more salt in the wounds of Flyers fans who haven’t seen their team celebrate in almost four decades.
The other scenario will see the Los Angeles Kings win their first ever Stanley Cup, a team modeled after the Flyers organization thanks to former head coach John Stevens (assistant coach), former goalie great Ron Hextall (assistant general manager), and former scout Dean Lombardi (president and general manager).
But why not root for the Western Conference team? Because of two former Flyers named Mike Richards and Jeff Carter.
Only the Chicago Bears really understand what's going on in Philadelphia.
The National Football League's Bears have had 15 different starting quarterbacks since 1992. No other sports franchise recently has had one of the most important positions in its respective sport be in so much flux.
That is until the Philadelphia Flyers and their perennial problems in net get tossed into the discussion.
Since Ron Hextall was "the guy" in between the pipes, the goalie position has been a revolving door for the Flyers from 1999 until today. They are hopeful the big money they spent on Ilya Bryzgalov this off season finally pays off, putting a stopper on the door.
The alumni game this Saturday is a reminder of the Flyers lack of any consistent goaltending in the last 15 years.